Chocobo Racing Review

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By Doug Perry
With so many fantastic games already in its stable, and so many khổng lồ look forward to, Square's attempt khổng lồ capitalize on the dễ thương factor of its sizeable cast of characters makes good business sense. And what better trò chơi to well, "cash in" on, than with a kart racer. At least for the North American market, the trò chơi concept is bankable (thanks to lớn Mario Kart's ongoing success); it's cute; filled with funny one-liners, và provides a good amount of bonus characters and rewards.

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Hardline RPG fans and Square followers won't lượt thích what they see in Chocobo Racing, but they may play through it lớn find the bonus characters và extra courses. Chocobo Racing is different for Square. It's really for kids, the younger crowd who's untainted by peer pressure, the kind of cynicism one learns as a teenager, & well, and telling experience. Still, if you don't lượt thích kart racing at all, this game is good for something else. A playable demo of Chocobo's Dungeon 2 is packed in, và it's a decent little game in itself.GameplayThe kart formula hasn't changed much here. Players can pick from several well-liked characters (eight khổng lồ start off with, with at least three more to lớn earn), choose from a decent mix of imaginative courses, và then race against their opponents, blasting them with power-ups, stealing their goods, và taking the heat themselves. From a choice of five different modes (Story Mode, Grand Prix, Time Attack, Versus & Relay), players can play for a good amount of time, too. There are least 10 courses in all, too, eight lớn start out with, plus at least two more to earn.Story - Players race through a story narrated by Sid, who invents Chocobo's rocket-powered roller blades. Chocobo soon meets up with Mog, Golem, Goblin, đen Magician, Chubby Chocobo, trắng Mage, Behemoth, and the first bonus character, Bahamut. At least two more characters can be unlocked from playing through the Story mode và beating it again & again. Story mode is characterized by a weird ode khổng lồ Yoshi's Story, in an unfolding pop-up book style, intermixing races with the new characters on their courses with storyline. It's cute and creative, but not entirely original. Finish the race và earn a "edit parameter" section, a cool little way to personalize your favorite character for future races. There's more to lớn the story that I've told here, but it's worth seeing và playing for yourself. A hint? Just think Final Fantasy VIII.Grand (GP) Prix - If unfamiliar with the Grand Prix Style, this mode enables players lớn pick from four courses, in whatever order you choose, & then provides an accumulative point system that rewards he or she with the most points at the over of four races. This can be played with one against the computer or two players head khổng lồ head. A thoughtful Spectator Mode compliments the standard gameplay, for those who prefer khổng lồ watch.Vs. -- Me against you, pal, mano a mano. The two-player mode is where it's at, with players able to pick any character, power-up & any course they choose. While you thought the computer was dirty, wait until you play against your friends. This brings out their true colors, và it's one of the best aspects of Chocobo Racing.Time Attack - Race against the clock and post your impressive times for bragging rights. Race again and watch as your battle against your previous time in the khung of a ghost car.Relay - Just what it sounds like, a relay race. Honestly, this isn't my favorite part of the game, because while it seems lượt thích it adds a favorable new dimension khổng lồ the game, it's really just more of the same stuff.Special AbilitiesWhat sets Chocobo Racing apart from the ever-increasing kart racing contenders is its phối of power-ups and Special Abilities. Prior to lớn the race each character selects a special ability. These range from the simple Dash (quick speed injection), Grip-up (enhances cornering), and Flap (permits flying over earthbound attacks), to the more attack-oriented Mug, Magic Plus, và Receive. Every character has his or her own Ability, each of which mixes differently with the power-ups found on the course. The mix of the two, plus a good amount of timing, can spell certain doom for your enemies. Or vice versa.The game manual spells out each of the Special Abilities, but the one worth mentioning are these last ones. Magic Plus enables players to lớn boost any power-up lớn the next stage of its three-level set. Here's an example, grab a water power-up, và as soon as your meter reaches maximum level, the water droplet powers up to a more damaging multi-puddle attack. Power up khổng lồ the third level and freeze everybody on the course! Mug enables a perfect theft. Simply press it & you'll steal a power-up from one of your opponents. Receive is cool, too, but it's rather passive. Once you are attacked, you pick up the power-up projected on you. Get attacked by a fireball, & once you recover, you can now project a fireball.One last thing about the Special Abilities, they all have different regeneration times. The more powerful abilities are much slower, obviously, & the less powerful are quicker. So, when you sit down lớn play Chocobo you should think about the settings before simply jumping in headfirst. My favorite is lớn pick the đen Magician, who's naturally invulnerable to lớn land attacks, and then select Magic Plus, a great combination.

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ControlChocobo Racing is not a great kart racer, và the control really tells the story. Yes, kart games are supposed to be arcade style, fun little games, but at this stage in the growth of the genre, one would think that the perfectionists at Square would create masterful kart racer. The abilities & power-ups are great, but the control is weak. If you happened khổng lồ rip xuất hiện your new jewel box wrapping, and jumped right into GP mode, you'd be disappointed. The simplistic three-way turning is annoying, especially when dashing. But as with any racing game, players must know the courses well, và know how "Drift." Just lượt thích in Mario Kart, there is more technique than at first meets the eye. Other techniques are the Dash Start, & the "avoid the spin-attack' technique, to name just a couple.Knowing the courses is even more crucial when playing through courses packed with right angle turns, such as the Haunted Mansion or Bahamut's secret course. Khổng lồ get the feel of this game best, players should start with the Story mode, & get used to each character's abilities và their courses.GraphicsGraphics don't make a game, but they sure do immerse players và enhance the world they're entering. Chocobo Racing is not in any way a reflection of most Square games. It's filled with seams in the courses, & a simplistic flat-shaded, sprite sensibility throughout. What's strange is that despite the sprite-based characters, the game still suffers from slowdown when more than three characters appear on screen at once.The characters aren't comparable to those seen in most Square games in detail, creativity or They are minimal, made of 2d sprites, và crude. It would be one thing if the were simply cute và great looking, but they're unpolished, minimal, & in some cases, ugly. I suppose younger kids won't even notice, but someone like myself, who's played too many games, sees this stuff immediately. Compared to lớn any other Square game, this is a sham in the graphics department.The FMAs, however, aren't of this caliber. They're great. The intro movie is great, giving credence khổng lồ each of the characters and their personalities. Each time you beat the GP mode with a new character, you'll receive a new movie or high render collage, extending the splendor of your win. These are automatically saved into the Options mode.SoundHmmmm... In Chocobo Racing, the music is neither here nor there, with a few exceptions. It's cute & bubbly, like an early Super NES or Genesis game, and it's made for, you guessed it, a younger sort of player. Electronic blips, horn toots, và squeaks pepper the sound effect landscape, và that's neat, too. It's almost a kind of throw-back, honestly. If you like Final Fantasy (and there are few who don't lượt thích at least one game in the series), then you'll find several FF tunes imbedded in different courses.
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